Auto Attendant Graphic for Call Routing

The Auto Attendant: Adding Value to Your Business and Your Customers

Most people don’t like hearing an automated attendant answer when they call a business. What is an auto attendant? An Automated Attendant  answers your phone calls and provides a personalized message to callers with options for connecting to an operator, dialing by name or extension, or connecting to up to nine configurable extensions. For example, Press 1 for Support, 2 for Sales, etc. How is this a potential benefit for your business and your customers?

Business Benefits

  • Better utilize existing employees
  • More efficient and accurate call routing

Do you have a dedicated employee who’s primary job it is to answer the phone?  Do they spend a large portion of their time routing calls to others within your organization?  We’re not suggesting that an automated attendant should eliminate such positions, but free these people to create even more value for your company.

Maybe your organization has a ring all policy where any available employee can answer an incoming call.  There are benefits to this scenario as well. However, when it is not the job of a single person to route callers, your employees may be receiving calls that are better handled by others within your company.  Those calls then have to be re-routed, at which point the caller may become frustrated or impatient.

Even the most basic automated attendant can help your employees be more productive, routing callers to the right people within your organization and getting it right every time.

Customer Benefits

  • Quickly access correct personnel
  • Less hold time

While many people prefer to hear a live voice when they call your company, everyone can appreciate getting their call routed to the right person in your organization in a timely manner.  If they are in need of help, they want to talk to support, and quickly.  An auto attendant, when implemented properly, will easily accomplish such a task.  The trick is to not get bogged down in all the capabilities of the technology.  Yes and auto attendant can provide business hours, directions to your location, even promotions and current specials.  However, initially you want to keep it simple by routing callers to the major groups within your company: sales, support, accounting, etc.

Example Auto Attendant Greeting

Press the play button below to hear an example of an auto attendant greeting:

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Fortunately, it is very easy to implement an automated attendant in most cases.  Many legacy telephone systems have the ability to record prompts and program call routing internally.  Newer IP-PBX  and hosted PBX solutions make it even easier.  You can use a web interface to select the prompts for your callers to dial. You then upload an audio file with the prompts, similar to the example above. The final step is to set the auto attendant to answer all incoming calls on your main telephone number.  Then you and your customers can begin to enjoy timely, efficient and accurate call routing.